Hawaii Women Lawyers


Annual HWL Awards Reception

April 12, 2018

Presentation of HWL Awards for 2017

Jennifer Solidum Rose »
Avis Aokele Kalama »
Hawaii Supreme Court Chief Justice Mark Recktenwald »
Vanessa Chong »
Senator Rosalyn Baker »

Glass Shell Awards are given each year at the HWL Annual Awards


Honorees with HWL President Mihoko Ito





Members of Hawaii Women Lawyers' Board of Directors









Jennifer Solidum Rose



Individual attorney having achieved accomplishments of significant merit that advance the mission of Hawaii Women Lawyers

Jennifer Solidum Rose

Named one of “Honolulu’s Most Inspiring Women” by the Honolulu City and County’s Committee on the Status of Women, Jennifer Solidum Rose has worked for over 25 years as an attorney and advocate to address the intersections of gender-based violence, cultural and linguistic access and immigrant rights. She is a trainer and frequently called upon as an authority on the utilization of legal and advocacy strategies to combat sexual harassment and violence against women.

Jenn currently serves as the Director of the University of Hawaii Office of Institutional Equity, which coordinates and oversees the University’s system-wide policies and initiatives related to Title IX and VAWA. Since OIE’s inception in 2015, Jenn has served as a chair in the Act 222 state legislative task force that assisted in passing legislation requiring Title IX training for UH System students and employees and confidential advocates for all UH campuses. Additionally, under Jenn’s leadership, UH launched accessible, online and live Title IX (TIX) training for University employees and students, developed important community partnerships and conducted a system-wide climate survey on sexual harassment and gender based violence.

From 2007 to 2015, Jenn served as the Gender Equity Specialist at the University of Hawaii at Mānoa, a faculty position she held for over eight years, providing advocacy and case management services and strengthening institutional responses to Title IX and sex discrimination. Since 2005, she has taught the Family Law Clinic at the William S. Richardson School of Law, a course on domestic violence and civil remedies and was twice recognized as the “Adjunct Professor of the Year Award” for her teaching. At Richardson, Jenn was named the inaugural recipient of the “Advocates for Public Interest Law Faculty Award”.

Jenn has also received numerous awards for her advocacy work on behalf of women and marginalized populations. In 2012, she was recognized by the Patsy Takemoto Mink Education Foundation, the Hawai‘i State Senate and Hawaii State House of Representatives for her work on Title IX issues. In 2011, the Hawaii Bar Association’s “Champion for Social Justice Award”, a distinction given to an attorney who advocates for social justice in the face of controversy. In 2006, Ms. Rose received the Hawai‘i Women Legal Foundation’s “Rhoda Lewis Award” for outstanding public interest work.

As a consultant for Futures Without Violence, Jenn was a contributing author for a publication for universities entitled, “Beyond Title IX: Guidance for Preventing and Responding to Gender-based Violence in Higher Education.” As an educator, she co-authored a chapter in the textbook, Social Work with Immigrants and Refugees: Legal Issues, Clinical Skills and Advocacy (2008). Prior to becoming faculty at UHM, she worked for ten years at the Domestic Violence Action Center in Hawaii as a managing attorney and their first director of community engagement, developing programs toward increasing access to services for immigrant survivors and other underserved populations.

Active in the legal community, Jenn served on the board of Hawaii Women Lawyers for ten years and served on numerous committees of the Hawaii Supreme Court and the Hawaii Commission on Access to Justice, with a focus on increasing gender equity and language access within court systems. For many years, she has served on advisory of he National Asian Pacific Islander Institute on Gender Based Violence and, more recently, on the Hawaii Advisory of the Joyful Heart Foundation.

In her mind, Jenn’s greatest accomplishment is raising her two daughters, Jordyn and Jisella, to become compassionate and socially conscious young individuals.

Avis Aokele Kalama



Individual in our community who has made significant community contributions that advance the mission of Hawaii Women Lawyers

Avis Aokele Kalama

Avis Aokele Kalama is the Executive Director of the Windward Spouse Abuse Shelter (“WSAS”) and, since the early 1990s, has been the driving force behind its existence and success. Avis originally served as a member of the Windward Spouse Abuse Coalition and then became one of the founding board members of Windward Spouse Abuse Shelter, Inc. in 1992. She also served in Hawaii’s State House of Representatives. In 2003, she stepped off the WSAS board to take over as executive director of the organization and become its shelter manager.

WSAS was established in the early 1990’s as a result of a coalition of concerned members of the windward community, including churches and Castle Hospital emergency room employees who got together to do something to protect women from their abusers. This movement originated when the employees of Castle Hospital emergency room petitioned members of the Women’s Caucus of the State Legislature about the light court sentence received by the husband of Cathie Carvalho. Cathie was kidnapped, tortured and abused by her husband over several days. When she arrived at Castle emergency, she was barely recognizable and considered dead. Castle fought to save Cathie but she passed away soon thereafter. Outraged by the light criminal court sentence in that case, the Windward Spouse Abuse Coalition was formed. The Coalition worked with the Women’s Legislative Caucus to change laws and worked with the windward community to raise money to purchase a facility to shelter women who needed protection from their abusers. This facility, called “Hale Ola” (“house of life or healing”), has been a safe place of healing for women and children, providing a pathway to Independence since 1992.

Hale Ola has seen over 5,000 women and children go through its doors since Avis took over as its shelter manager. Avis has created a comfortable, safe, and nurturing “home” for these women and their children, helping them through the initial stress and trauma of their past situation, steering them toward the future and giving them hope. In addition to her work with shelter clients, she also speaks to countless groups to educate people about domestic violence and ways people can help, while also being responsible for all the community assistance WSAS receives.

Avis is also a mother, a grandmother, and a survivor.

Hawaii Supreme Court Chief Justice Mark Recktenwald



Judge who has made significant contributions to the bench that advance the mission of Hawaii Women Lawyers

Hawaii Supreme Court Chief Justice Mark Recktenwald

Mark E. Recktenwald was sworn in as Chief Justice of the Supreme Court on September 14, 2010. He joined the Supreme Court as an Associate Justice on May 11, 2009, and previously served as Chief Judge of the Intermediate Court of Appeals beginning in April 2007.

Prior to his appointment to the Intermediate Court of Appeals, Recktenwald served as the director of the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs, as an Assistant United States Attorney for the District of Hawai`i, and as an attorney in private practice. He received his undergraduate degree from Harvard University and his law degree from the University of Chicago.

Vanessa Chong



Individual in our community who has over her or his career made significant contributions in areas that advance the mission of Hawaii Women Lawyers

Vanessa Chong

In 2018, Vanessa Chong, longtime executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union Hawaii chapter, retired. Chong first joined the ACLU staff in 1981 and became the organization’s executive director in 1984. Under her leadership, the affiliate has grown in size, effectiveness, and influence statewide. During her first year as executive director, ACLU filed its first class action lawsuit in partnership with local and national ACLU lawyers, to challenge the conditions in Hawaii's prisons. During her tenure, the local ACLU has proven itself a tireless advocate and key partner on issues such as ensuring the equal protection of the law for racial, ethnic and religious minorities, protecting reproductive rights, securing marriage equality for same-sex couples, encouraging fair treatment of homeless individuals, and ensuring free speech and protest rights for all points of view.

The ACLU of Hawaii is an affiliate of the nationwide ACLU, the country’s premier organization dedicated to protecting civil liberties and civil rights since 1920. A non-profit and non-partisan organization, the local ACLU has more than 4,000 members and donors, a staff of seven and an annual budget of more than $1 million. The mission of the Hawaii affiliate of the ACLU is to protect the civil liberties contained in the state and federal constitutions through litigation, legislative and public education programs statewide. The ACLU is funded primarily through private donations, does not accept any government funds, and offers its services at no cost to the public.

Senator Rosalyn Baker



In recognition of leadership in support of our community, the advancement of women and equality of all people

Senator Rosalyn Baker

Senator Roz Baker can pinpoint the defining moment that sparked her interest in government policy. It started first as a college student and then as an advocate in the youth franchise movement to lower the voting age to 18. Witnessing the impact of policy change inspired her to serve in public office and continues to motivate her today.

A former small business owner, Roz has represented the people of Maui County in the Hawai`i State Legislature for over 25 years in a variety of leadership positions. She currently represents the 6th Senate District (South and West Maui) and chairs the Senate Committee on Commerce, Consumer Protection, and Health. Roz has successfully championed bills to increase access to health care through telehealth, insurance reform and by strengthening our hospitals, community clinics and trauma systems. She has added her voice to the fight for equal rights for all, as well as the prevention of domestic violence and sex assault. Roz took the lead on landmark mortgage foreclosure reforms to help keep residents in their homes. Since 2002, Senator Baker has had a pivotal role in developing health policy for the State by championing Hawai`i’s Clean Indoor Act, increasing cigarette taxes, assisting a revitalized UH Cancer Center receive its NCI designation and raising the age to 21 to possess or smoke cigarettes and e-cigarettes. She has been recognized for her leadership in health policy by organizations including the American Cancer Society (Hawai`i-Pacific and nationally), Hawai`i Primary Care Association, Healthcare Association of Hawai`i, Hawai`i Psychological Association, the American Heart Association, the Coalition for a Tobacco Free Hawai`i and AARP. From 2007-2008, Senator Baker served as Chair of Ways and Means, crafting a balanced two-year biennium budget and helping pilot the Senate’s successful paperless project – moving the Senate and committee processes into the digital age.

Besides her work on State legislative committees, Roz has also served on several national committees including the Subcommittee on Pediatric Emergency Care of the Institute for Medicine. A cancer survivor, Roz has been a longtime volunteer leader for the American Cancer Society.

Prior to moving to Hawai`i in 1980, Roz was a lobbyist for the National Education Association in Washington, D.C. She is a graduate of Southwest Texas State University (now Texas State University at San Marcos) with a BA in political science and speech and a secondary teaching certificate. She did her postgraduate studies at the University of Southwestern Louisiana in Lafayette (now University of Louisiana Lafayette).


Past Awardees


Outstanding Woman Lawyer of the Year                                                                                          
2016 Joanne Grimes

2015 Linda Ichiyama

2014 Janet Kelly

2013 Rep. Della Au Bellati
2012 Senator Maile Shimabukuro
2011 Shannon Wack and Jo Kim
2010 Kathryn Matayoshi
2009 Florence Nakakuni
2008 Hazel Beh
2007 Senator Colleen Hanabusa
2006 Colleen Wong
2005 Thalia Murphy
2004 Lea Hong
2003 Professor Mari Matsuda
2002 Congresswoman Patsy Mink
2001 General Coral Wong Pietsch
2000 Donna Tanoue
1999 Susan Ichinose
1998 Attorney General Margery Bronster
1997 Beadie Kanahele Dawson
1996 Yuklin Aluli
1995 Stephanie Rezents
1994 Pamela Ferguson-Brey
1993 Mervina Cash-Kaeo
1992 Esther Kwon Arinaga
1991 Ellen Godbey Carson
1990 Lorraine Akiba
1989 Joyce Neely & Leslie A. Hayashi
1988 Joann Yukimura
1987 Elizabeth Jubin Fujiwara
1986 Susan Oki Mollway
1985 Sherry Broder
1984 Angie King
1983 Shelby Anne Floyd
1982 Carol Mon Lee
1981 Meredith Lennel


Outstanding Judicial Achievement Award                                                                               

2016 Hon. Trudy Senda

2015 Hon. Linda K.C. Luke                                                 

2014 Hon. Jennifer Ching

2013 Judge Christine Kuriyama
2012 Judge Leslie Hayashi
2011 Judge Faye Koyanagi
2010 Judge Leslie Kobayashi
2009 Judge Corinne Watanabe

2008 Judge Mark Browning
2007 Judge Karen Radius
2006 Judge Sabrina S. McKenna
2005 Judge Colleen Hirai
2004 Judge Susan Oki Mollway
2003 Judge Marie Milks
2002 Justice Paula Nakayama
2001 Judge Frances Wong


Lifetime Achievement Award

2016 Hon. Richard Clifton

2015 Marya Grambs

2014 Bobby Chong

2013 Director Loretta Fuddy                                                                               

2012 Marilyn Lee
2011 Professor Jon Markham Van Dyke
2010 Chief Justice Ronald T. Y. Moon
2009 Mahealani Perez Wendt
2008 Sonia Faust
2007 Judge Marcia Waldorf
2006 Shimeji Ryusaki Kanazawa
2005 Melody MacKenzie
2004 Lois Yasui
2003 Alana W. Lau
2002 Shelby Anne Floyd
2001 Beadie Kanahele Dawson
2000 Bernice Littman
1999 Ah Quon McElrath
1998 Chief Justice William S. Richardson
1997 Honorable Evelyn Lance
1996 Congresswoman Patsy Mink
1995 Honorable Betty Vitousek
1994 Naomi Campbell

Distinguished Service Award

2016 Zale Okazaki

2015 Dr. Jill Omori

2014 Hon. Karen Radius (ret.)

2013 Rep. Sylvia Luke                                                                                                                           

2012 U.S. Senator Mazie Hirono
2011 Elizabeth Kent
2010 Amy Agbayani, Ph. D
2009 Adriana Ramelli
2008 Rob Perez
2007 Chris Chun
2006 Dean Carol Mon Lee
2005 Laurie Tochiki
2004 Nanci Kreidman
2003 Lorraine Robinson
2002 Denise Antolini
2001 Allicyn Hikida Tasaka & Annelle Amaral
2000 Ellen Godbey Carson
1999 Diane Yukihiro Chang
1998 Jacqueline Young
1997 Dorothy “Dolly” Ching
1996 Judy Weightman
1995 Reverend Pamela Vessels & Anne Clarkin
1994 Judy Sobin & Windward Spouse Abuse Coalition
1993 Honorable Marie Milks
1992 Rep. Annelle Amaral & Sara Lyn Smith
1991 Chief Justice Herman T.F. Lum
1990 Honorable Helen Gillmor
1989 Senator Mary George
1988 Eleanor Pearce
1987 Naomi Campbell
1986 Congresswoman Patsy Mink
1985 C. Frederick Schutte
1984 Honorable Betty Vitousek
1982 Harriet Bouslog
1981 Rhoda Lewis

President’s Award                                                                  

2016 Ellen Godbey Carson   

2015 Hon. Daniel R. Foley                                                               

2014 Women of Waianae                                                           

2013 Hawaii State Commission on the Status of Women             

2012 Ete Bowl Founders & Participants
2011 Susan Ichinose
2010 Kimberlee Bassford
2009 Elisabeth Chun
2008 Melissa Pavlicek
2007 Louise K. Y. Ing
2006 Congresswoman Mazie Hirono
2005 Representative Barbara Marumoto
2004 Dr. Laura Weldon Hoque
2003 Karen Char & June R. Lee
2002 Lynn Maunakea
2001 Patricia McManaman
2000 Rai Saint Chu & Emme Tomimbang
1999 M. Casey Jarman
1998 Sister Michelle McQueeny
1997 Gladys Kamakuokalani Aiona Brandt
1996 Honorable Marie Milks
1995 Madelyn Perry & Reverend Pamela Boyd
1994 Cynthia Thielen
1993 Trudy Burns Stone
1992 Sharon Burnham Takeuchi
1991 Susan Arinaga Li
1990 Michelle Tucker
1989 Susan Jaworowski